Two years in – what has Tony Abbott done for us? 338



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Today marks the second anniversary of Tony Abbott’s reign as Prime Minister and he is facing low support on all fronts. But is he really that bad – or is this just the mid-term blues?

The latest Newspoll results show the Coalition’s primary vote is down 6.6 points from its election win, and satisfaction with Mr Abbott’s performance has tumbled 17 points in two years. Labor celebrates its 30th consecutive lead in a two-party preferred system.

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There’s no doubting that Tony Abbott is unpopular, not just at home but abroad. Australia’s economy is stagnant, we’re copping flack for our treatment of refugees, there’s the Fair Trade Agreement hold-up and the same sex-marriage issue that, for now, has been pushed aside.

But we will give Tony Abbott one thing – he has learned to respect over-60s, or at least understand that we exist, and that we are a force to be reckoned with.

When he first came to power, Abbott has his sights set on a few limited things: the carbon tax, the economy and, of course, “the boats”.

One suggestion he made was to make changes to the pension, but then back-pedalled after the huge furore. This wake-up call from the Prime Minister is probably why he is adamant he won’t make any changes to superannuation to this day.

At least on that front, he appears to be on the side of the over-60, but is it enough to win your support?

What changes in attitude and policy would you like to see from Tony Abbott in order to win your vote?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. He has done nothing for Australia, except cause many Australian’s a lot of worry, my biggest fear at the moment is that they will replace him, there is less than 12 month to go the next election and I want him right where he is, we the Australian public should boot this terrible Prime Minister out, not The Liberal Party.

    19 REPLY
    • A one sided view keep thing as they are, my only issue is the labor party keep putting ex union bosses on the front bench then they will not draw an audience big enough to govern in their own right.

      1 REPLY
      • I agree, I live in a very big Liberal area, most agree he is doing a fantastic job, Depends on your priorities, and what your views are. Most Libs are against the Unions of TODAY , the ones who help themselves & no one else. and the Pig who runs them. He has lifted Australia out of the Doldrums that The previous two PM s got us into. Other trivialities like SSM, republic etc, are really not important

    • Steve Screaton you have a one sided view too, we all do but The Liberal Party has managed to piss off everyone from the cradle to the grave

    • I am confident if an election was held today Steve Screaton , that the ALP would win, and not only would they win but they would win with a majority of 35 seats because that is how many The Liberals would lose

    • Oh god help us all if that were to happen Libbi Elliot. I hope that wouldn’t happen especially if little back stabbing Billy Shorten was still leader of the ALP. The mind boggles just thinking about it!!

    • I can’t wait Patricia Clapton , there will be partying in the streets just like when Howard was booted out

    • I want to see Abbott concede defeat. It will kill him, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he became ill and sent Bishop to do the job. He’s gutless enough

    • Ann Williams what a silly comment I am all for a republic since you were silly enough to mention it. and the line was “we the Australian public” meaning everyone “

    • Steve Screaton The Labor party should be putting ex union bosses in. That means they’re doing their job. The Labor party is a union-backed party. The Liberal party keeps putting ex employer advocate lawyers in, that’s what they stand for. All for the big businesses and screw the workers. Yet dopey working people still vote Liberal for reasons no sensible person can fathom

    • I’m not fussed on Shorten, but when push comes to shove, Abbott and his stupid captain’s picks and most of his LNP clowns need the boot. I don’t recall a more divisive and inept LNP government ever… 🙁

    • me either Rex Erskine and that is going to be a big problem for Abbott, even these reclaim marches reflect on him, it is the rabid right marching and everyone knows it

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      • The rabid right are those sensible people concerned about the Islamisation of Australia. When moslems come knocking on your door with knives in hand, it won’t help to have been a left winger – your head will still roll.

        2 REPLY
        • Agree, with you. Surely we are allowed to have an opinion on WHO we allow to live among us.

        • Robinoz.The “rabid right” are defending Halal, an imposed observance of religion & a levy on commodities as well, just as much as Labor is ignoring it
          Why? votes.
          Which way did that go!?

    • History is written by the winners and there were books written awaiting publication that would have enshrined Howard as our greatest ever statesman that never got printed because he lost his seat. Thank Christ!!!

    • The ratbag right are not very smart, that is no secret !! Every time they get out there and march they are protesting this Government..who grants people certification to make their products Halal ? It is the Department of Agriculture and who is the minister for that? Oh no it is Barnaby Joyce, you need to be out there protesting him..! Without certification there would be no halal products

  2. Good News ! But no way am I voting for another 3 years of this mismanagement, he has done nothing except double the deficit and rort us and cause people a lot of stress

  3. This next 12 months can’t come fast enough and 12 months is a lot more time to do more damage, he in incompitent

  4. No i don’t trust him or his party any more than i trust the ALP. They are as bad as each other, they say one thing then do the opposite when they get elected, so no i won’t be voting for either of the major parties.

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    • I agree Gillian. But I am in trouble as I don’t trust any of the minor parties either. What to do?

    • Then don’t vote at all, cop the fine and ensure more of the same regressive governing by ideologically driven mobs like the LNP. Learn how to make sure that we don’t get our Senate full of self interested one issue politicians who trade off, in order to get their way. Our Senate is full of drones.

    • What has the ALP done to betray that trust? lumping the LNP and the ALP together as “the same” is very lazy thinking! They are nothing alike when you look closely.

    • Sally Ann Westcott after 2 years of this Abbott Government , I suspect people know if they want to vote for him or not and many will not

    • If we vote the Alp back in we will end up with another Carbon tax, that will push our electricity and gas bills up is that what you want to happen. Maybe i wouldn’t feel the way i do about the ALP if they hadn’t lied about the Carbon Tax to begin with.

      3 REPLY
      • The carbon tax is a good idea. Unfortunately it may take a catastrophe to make that apparent to many of us.

      • Gillian. Sometimes it’s better to look outside the box for reasons people change their stance in politics.
        During that election, neither could form a government.
        Gillard had lost the public support (The reasons are immaterial) & that gave sway to the LNP.
        The problem with getting a majority, was that the independents didn’t trust Tony Abbott, otherwise the lobbying wouldn’t have been needed.
        They already knew what he was like, & we have now learned, & Labor folded to the Greens to introduce a carbon tax for their support.
        The reference of Shorten being a political back stabber, well if that is a deadly sin, they should have painted the parliamentary chamber red.
        Tony Abbott has to be the most ruthless of them all. Ask Malcolm Turnbull.

      • I for one do not feel I am any better off since the repeal of the carbon tax. My electricity bills haven’t gone down, food hasn’t gone down, and I certainly haven’t had an extra $500 in my hand.

    • Voting in Independents keeps the 2 major parties honest, both the above and this point is not lazy thinking, it’s smart thinking. To just ignore the possibility of another carbon tax that”s what i call lazy thinking, no disrespect intended.

    • Nobody needs to cop a fine if you get your name crossed off at your local polling booth, what you do after that is up to the individual, after all we do live in a democratic country and everybody is entitled to their own opinion.

      1 REPLY
      • People fought hard (especially women) for the right to vote. Not to do so is not to acknowledge that point. Although, I do admit, at times it is hard finding someone for whom one wants to vote.

  5. Blithering idiot never guess he was educated, an embarrassment to Australia

    9 REPLY
  6. Who do we vote for? Don’t have much choice really.

    4 REPLY
  7. There is no way I would vote for this absolutely useless Government. The only thing that works for Tony Abbott is falsely talking up the terror threat, vilifying Muslims and standing in front of increasing number of flags talking tough. Sure we have to vigilant about the terror threat but his behaviour and rhetoric and the increasing number of anti Muslim demonstrations is more likely to increase the radicalisation of Muslim youth than prevent it. That a terror attack in Australia would work to his political advantage has some of the more cynical commentators suggesting that a horrific terrorist attack is top of his wish list. This Government has actually achieved nothing, bullying is so ingrained in many of the Ministers they have no idea how to negotiate with the senate to get economic policies through.

    26 REPLY
    • Terry Chandler Abbott wasn’t nicknamed MR NO for no reason despite the Liberals saying NO to everything to the ALP , they managed to negotiate their way through legislation, Abbott could not negotiate his way out of a wet paper bag. he is too arrogant

    • Terry Chandler he can negotiate after all the mix of parties and independents in the senate mean no party has control, they just need to get the rhetoric right, be prepared to negotiate and amend bills and be prepared to accept some policy is so appalling nobody will support it.

    • Do some reading about what is happening in European countries, the USA and others with large numbers of moslems and then consider what will happen in Australia when numbers increase. It’s not rocket science.

    • Barbara are you telling me that the previous government of Rudd/Gillard/Rudd or the potential criminal Bill Shorten would be a better alternative? PLEASE! DON’T ANSWER. THE ABBOTT GOVERNMENT: The First 18 Months.
      Building a Strong, Prosperous and Secure future for all Australians.
      1. The government abolished the Carbon Tax, saving Australian families around $550 per year. The abolition of the Carbon Tax led to the largest decline in retail electricity prices on record.
      2. The government abolished the mining tax. The abolition of the complete mining tax package will save the Budget around $50 billion over the next decade.
      3. Operation Sovereign Borders has led to a dramatic reduction in illegal boat people coming to Australia. Only one boat has arrived since this government has been elected. Under Labor, we saw 800 boats, 50,000 arrivals, 1,200 deaths at sea and an $11 billion blow out in costs.
      4. The government has delivered Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Japan and China.
      5. The government has given environmental approval for more than $1 trillion worth of projects.
      6. More than 200,000 jobs were created in 2014 – triple the job growth rate in 2013 when Labor was last in power.
      7. In the 2014-15 Budget funding for hospitals was increased by a record $5.3 billion (40%) over four years.
      8. In the 2014-15 Budget funding to schools was increased by a record $4.9 billion (37%) over four years. A students first approach has been established to ensure this increased funding translates into better results – focussing on teacher quality, school autonomy, engaging parents and strengthening the curriculum.
      9. To cut red tape we have conducted three repeal days in the Federal Parliament. Since the 2013 election our cuts to red tape will save around $2.4 billion in compliance costs – double the amount we promised.
      10. Working with industry, the government has enacted the country’s first food and grocery Code of Conduct. The Code contains a written grocery supply agreement, an obligation to act in good faith and a dispute resolution mechanism.
      11. The government is ensuring integrity in our foreign investment system. We have proposed the establishment of a new enforcement team within the Australian Taxation Office to identify and investigate illegal foreign purchases of residential real estate and new tougher penalties for breaches of the rules. The Government is also consulting on the introduction of an application fee on all foreign investment proposals to fund increased enforcement activity.
      12. For small businesses, on July 1 of this year there will a company tax cut at least as big as the 1.5 per cent the government has already flagged.
      13. We have seen the highest number of new business creations ever recorded. In 2014, there were 223,013 new companies registered in Australia – an increase of over 10% from the level we saw in 2013.
      14. The government is investing $5 billion to establish jobactive which will improve the quality of services delivered to job seekers and employers.From 1 July 2015, 66 organisations will deliver one or more jobactive services to job seekers and employers across Australia.
      15. As part of our National Ice Action Strategy to tackle the growing scourge of the drug ‘ice’ (crystal methamphetamine) we are establishing a National Ice Taskforce. It will take a systematic and coordinated approach to fighting ice use through education, rehabilitation and law enforcement.
      16. The government re-commenced the live export of sheep, cattle and goats to Bahrain, Iran and Egypt.
      17. After decades of indecision by former governments, the Prime Minister announced that Badgery’s Creek would be the site for the Western Sydney Airport. When fully operational, it is expected to create 35,000 jobs by 2035, increasing to 60,000 jobs over time.
      18. The NBN is back on track with more than twice than number of premises able to access the NBN since the election while the number of connections have almost quadrupled.
      19. The 2014 Budget contained the largest infrastructure investment in Commonwealth history. Major projects include:
      $6.7 billion to upgrade the Bruce Highway;
      $5.6 billion to finish the duplication of the Pacific Highway;
      $1.5 billion to the WestConnex project in Sydney;
      $900 million to continue the Gateway Motorway North upgrade in Brisbane;
      Up to $1.3 billion for the Toowoomba Second Range;
      $675 million to finish the Gateway WA Project in Perth;
      $944 million for the upgrade of South Road in Adelaide;
      $925 million for the Perth Freight Link;
      $400 million to continue the Midland Highway upgrade in Tasmania;
      $335 million for the Great Northern Highway in Western Australia;
      $174 million for the North West Coastal Highway in Western Australia;
      The Australian Government continues to have $3 billion on the table to help build an East West Link.
      20. In a big boost to the Great Barrier Reef our Reef Sustainability Plan has been released and $100 million has been invested into the Reef Trust.
      21. Working with the States and territories, a $30 million jointly funded national awareness campaign will be underway to reduce violence against women and children and to prioritise the implementation of a national Domestic Violence Order scheme.
      22. To further fight terrorism the government has committed an additional $630 million over four years to Counter-Terrorism measures. More resources are going to the Australian Federal Police, to the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, to the Australian Secret Intelligence Service, the Office of National Assessments and the Customs and Border Protection Service and biometric screening is being installed at all our international airports.

    • bloody Mickey Mouse is a better alternative that Abbott Margrit Cleall . I would vote for Skippy over Abbott

    • Margrit do remember to pick up your pay packet. You sprout this LNP propaganda as though all of us will think all these measures a good thing. A lot of the funding measures listed are not new initiatives but continued funding of existing programs. Others are new funding arrangements created after wiping out funding for other agencies. Stoping the boats has caused Australia to commit acts that are against the UN Convention on Refugees and others are illegal. Free Trade Agreements take years to negotiate because the clauses are complex and may not actually benefit one of the signatories, that the LNP has signed them all in such a rush could be good or bad I don’t know enough about the details. The China FTA appears to do little to protect Australian jobs, with no need for even the week Labor Market testing required, just an open invitation to bring in workers often with none of the trade qualifications required in Australia. I am always far more impressed when someone has the knowledge and understanding to think for themselves rather than parrot party propaganda. Getting rid of the Carbon Tax and Mining Tax has done Australia no favours, and to abolish revenue without first controlling expenditure is just stupid and economically irresponsible.

    • I agree with margit I also wouldn’t vote for that bloody attention seeking bill shorten he can’t come up with any policies so he brings up same sex marriage. To get votes he is an insult to Mickey Mouse and goofey

      1 REPLY
    • David Jones, I think you probably would vote for Skippy if that’s the level of your intelligence.

    • Barbara the only people picking up pay packets and STEALING FROM THEIR MEMBERS are the corrupt Shorten and his union cronies.

    • Oh and its NOT PROPAGANDA Barbara, its FACT – you can even check YOUR ABC FACT CHECK – but then you wouldn’t know the truth if it hit you in the face. I feel so sorry for you and your blindness.

    • Margrit Cleall.. Come back when you use your real name and have a Facebook page that is more than a month old.

    • Goodness Margrit I am not saying any of those are actual lies what I am saying is they are not all good, well thought out things. Some are not true ‘new’ initiatives but rebranding of old ones. Labor may not be perfect and there has been trouble, but I am not naive enough not to believe there is absolutely nothing shonky between the LNP and some business groups.

    • Victoria Alexandra D’Arienzo , So I’m not supposed to have any opinions and I’m being paid? how very astute of you. The only people being paid are Short on ideas Shorten who has been stealing from his union members – and his union cronies. disgusting!

      1 REPLY
      • What you mean you are NOT an LNP apparatchik?

    • Barbara Easthope – I understand what you are saying Barbara. However,the biggest shonks are Shorten and his union cronies.

    • Margrit Cleall.. I do not lie, the facts are on your Facebook page, no friends, first page posted last month.

    • Paul yes how many media types did they employ to try to make him sound good and monitor the media and social networks, obviously not enough as they don’t seem to be convincing a lot of us.

    • Margrit Cleall you forgot to mention what these morons are trying to do to the workers of this country ….. they’re recommending cutting penalty rates, recommending cutting unfair dismissal protections, recommending cutting the minimum wage. AND, giving employers the power to ‘offer’ take or leave contracts. BUT, I bet that doesn’t bother you, you’re probably no longer in the workforce ! Can you please tell be, if there have been 200,000 jobs created, why oh why have we got a higher unemployment rate ?

    • Victoria, the jobs were probably overseas jobs and poor teenagers getting 3 hours a week work.

  8. Anything he does or says is refuted or a statement is made to what he really meant to say and it is then reported as fact by the media so no matter what he does is wrong

  9. In two years? Yeh I know. He’s shown us how to act like a deranged dysfunctional incompetent corrupt greedy idiotic moron, & how to rant on just talking verbal diarrhoea

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